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Let. Me make a big thing. One of the first people to experiment with fiberglass is immaterial said building boats as Mr. Headley our place. Though he had been successful in building wooden sailing craft. Mr. Hinckley taught the fiberglass would allow his company more flexibility in producing high quality boats for the sailing public. By 960 his company was building large sailing craft of fiberglass using the same cast and ship the boat yard had been known for over the years. And it's all done right here where the original Hinkley design was built over 45 years ago. Henry R. Hinckley and
Company in men set me up. A company makes several sizes of sailing craft. Ranging from 14. To 64 feet. Because of the cost of the yacht the weekly bill and its desire to build the type of boat their customer wants. The company only begins construction when there has been an order placed for one of their boats. There are many things to be decided upon before construction is started. The buyer must make a decision on the equipment to be included. The type and number of sales to be used. The amount of navigational gear to be built in. The type of wood and the stain used in the interior. The company will even make certain design changes to accommodate the buyer's wishes like adding more shelves or closet.
When the final agreement to build is signed. The construction order is posted and sent to the different divisions to be included in their work schedules. This process assures that the proper piece of equipment is ready for installation in the hall at the right time. The hole in the deck assembly are built here in the fiberglass shop. These are the major pieces of the craft which are made of fiberglass. In the cutting room. Each piece of brass cross. Used in the hall and. Is. Labeled and stored until it is needed. By this time the men for the size Hollenbeck to be constructed has been moved into the glassing room. The two sides of the mold are bolted together. And mounted on this movable frame. The frame allows the mold to be tipped. To aid the workers in laying up the home. The deck more than this place close by. Their floors must be thoroughly clean. Waxed and polished to ensure that the hull of the deck can be removed when they are dry and that the outer surface of the hall will be free of any
defect. When the mold is ready. A thick coat of resin called gelcoat is sprayed on the resin is like a glue which hardens its very strong and is many times thicker than a coat of conventional Marine paint. This gel coat will become the outer surface of our sail yacht. It can even carry a collar if one is requested by the owner. Once the gel coat dries the workers can begin to apply the layers of glass fabric. This stab is actually made of the same material that you find in the windows of your home. Small pieces of glass called filaments are spun together to make the two kinds of cloth used in making Hinkley sailboats. Our hall is actually being built from the outside in. We've already laid off our gelcoat. Next comes a layer of glass which backs up and reinforces that gelcoat this code is usually made of light boat cloth. It is finally woven in provides a smooth backing for the gel coat
the next layer is made of fiberglass matting which is used to give thickness and rigidity to the hollow to the still wet mat is added a layer of heavy woven roving this layer adds strength and a smoother finish to the inner surface. All these layers are well saturated with resin so that each layer will have to the first the alternate layers of mat and roving are continued until the hall is the proper thickness and strength. In the case of the Hinkley boats anywhere from four to eight layers may be used. Depending on the size of the boat and the specific area in the hull itself. The same techniques are used to layout the deck. When the heart on the deck units have had enough time to dry or cure they are top free of their mold and made ready to be moved to the building where the boat will be assembled. Any rough edges or imperfections on the new home. Are sanded smooth. The fine dust can be very irritating to the skin.
Which is why this worker is wearing a protective suit your clothes block out the noise. Vandals protect the eyes and the face mask filters the air to be brief. In a final step the heart is led Teal is added the keel is poured at the foundry slabs of lead or heated right hot in the large cauldron. Then the lead is poured into a third are made for the model at the harbor waiting in the fiberglass in shed when the lead keel is cooled it is removed from the form. Trim fitted and bonded to the home. The keel is a counterbalance for the tie mast and rigging and sails that go on top of the boat. The heavy weight of the keel studies the boat in an upright position. By the time the higher arrives at the assembly building the work has begun on its other equipment in the carpentry shop the different units to be installed in the hall. Are nearing completion. The yacht is divided into sleeping quarters a kitchen
and dining area storage spaces and bathrooms. These modules are laid out using wooden patterns designed for the proper model of crafts. And blend of the requested wood. The owner special requests for cabinetry are carried out here in the cabinet shop. And added to the module before they are installed in the home. In The Machine Shop the workmen are busy doing the fittings for the home. Here they build the rigging which holds the masts and controls the sails steers the boat and moves the center board. The set abroad is housed at the very bottom of the hall and is raised to allow the boat to enter shallow waters it is lowered in deeper water to give better performance under sail. The machine shop also builds many of the fittings used to raise and lower the sails. Lift the anchor and tie the boat to the dock. They also build the tanks which hold the fuel and water supplies for the crew.
One of the special divisions of the Machine Shop is the engine shop. Each engine which comes to hate the company is run up on this test stand to make sure that it meets its specifications. The engine is then the number of hours on the stand to break it in before it goes into the hole. In the Spar shop the master being fashioned from aluminum stock. All the things that will carry the sails attach the rigging and hand electronic equipment including radar and radio antennas are also attached now the wires and cables which control much of this equipment are run right inside the master in their own compartment. Speaking of navigation electronics Heatley maintains its own electrical shop. Here the technicians test all the navigational equipment the radios and electronics which will go into the yard. The technicians also build the electrical wiring systems and the control panels and install them in the belts.
India has to shop for decorations sleeping mattresses and other upholstery are being prepared. Each piece is constructed in the color combination requested by the owner and will be fitted into the yacht to complete the accommodations. The new holes I brought into this building for assembly. There are several items built into the hall to make it a stronger safer craft. Hole stiffeners or fiberglass along the length of the hall to give it more strength and your ability. The copper strapping placed along the hull serves a very important function. Imagine a boat at sea sailing through a storm. Sadly a band of lightning strikes the mast. The electricity would be channeled a lot of these trappings directly to the keel and into the water without injury to the vessels crew or passengers. This left along the edge of the hall is where the deck assembly will be attached.
The lift on the weekly yacht is made much wider than any other craft of its size because the company knows that this is an area where many sail yachts are apt to leak. Extra with the contact plate on the police boats. All of that eliminates this problem. One of the first items to go into the hall is the engine. It is placed as low in the hall as possible to aid in balancing the boat upright. The engine will be used to maneuver the yacht in and out of harbors and when there is no wind to sail with. The fuel and water tanks also installed now. Now the cabin molecules are placed in the hall and attached. It's sort of like a jigsaw puzzle each piece that's against another to form the complete interior of the boat. Now appliances and other equipment are secured to the boat. These may include a toilet. Sink. Refrigerator. Stove an island. And air conditioning
even a stereo radio and tape deck. Once the cabin compartments are installed the deck is attached to the home. Resin is applied to the whole lip and the deck with a joint and a rather tight seal is formed. The boat is now an enclosed fiberglass capsule containing relic living quarters for its captain and crew. In the cabins Craston are busy installing carpets inside lockers to cut down on noise and moisture doing finishing painting and adding some of the upholstery. The navigator's position gains the equipment which the owner has requested from a ship to shore radio to the most sophisticated navigational devices. This equipment along with a lighting system and the engine's electrical system connected to these control panels. On the deck. The steering equipment is the install auxiliary engine controls are also added so that the engine can be controlled easily from the cockpit.
The deck here is added now. Much of this year will have the masts in place and help control the sails when the yacht is at sea. As each step is completed a special group of harassment touch up the yacht to remove any scratches in the fiberglass. Now the yacht is moved outside for the final rigging phase using the TARP Crane the masts are lifted high above the audience. And we lowered the price. The standing room which holds up the mast is attached to the fittings on the deck. The fittings for the lights and radio and navigational equipment are also connected. Now the completed yacht with carefully. To the launching ramp by a thirty five time travel left. When the tide is high. The new yacht will be floated free from its cradle and will motor to the company's dock close to the yard. Here are the final preparations will be made for the yacht sea trials. Sea
trials may last for several days and during this time all the equipment on board will receive its final check. The navigational equipment will be tested. The sails will be checked to assure that the rigging works properly and the sails are properly cut and so. When it returns from sea trials and the operations if any are made the yacht is ready to be turned over to the new owner. It's been six months to a year since the mending of our harbor was started. Nineteen craftsmen technicians engineers clamors planners electricians seamstresses mechanics carpenters and welders have helped to build this yacht. And as anywhere else.
Field Trip
Episode Number
Yacht Building
Contributing Organization
Maine Public Broadcasting Network (Lewiston, Maine)
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Series Description
"Field Trip is a series of short educational documentaries that explore Maine's history, culture, and agriculture."
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Moving Image
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AAPB Contributor Holdings
Maine Public Broadcasting
Identifier: Accession #: 1282.PC24 (NHF)
Format: U-matic
Generation: Original
Duration: 00:30:00
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Chicago: “Field Trip; 2; Yacht Building,” 1983-06-17, Maine Public Broadcasting Network, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed May 19, 2024,
MLA: “Field Trip; 2; Yacht Building.” 1983-06-17. Maine Public Broadcasting Network, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. May 19, 2024. <>.
APA: Field Trip; 2; Yacht Building. Boston, MA: Maine Public Broadcasting Network, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from